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This Is How You Can Stop Thumb Sucking In Babies!

Babies often look out for comfort and security all the time. When your child feels bored or feels lack of security, the thumbs often find their way to the mouth and often stay there for months to years. Though thumbsucking is one of the self-soothe techniques for babies, too much of anything is too bad. So, here are a few tips to help your child to stop thumbsucking.  

1.Identify the triggers: 

Your baby might be sucking the thumb as a response to a stimulus. For example, your child might suck the thumb when he is bored or hungry or exhausted. In that case, identify the stimulus and respond to it. If boredom is the culprit, offer your baby to engage in new games or different activity which could keep his both hands busy. If he is sucking the thumb due to hungry, prevent the bouts of hunger by providing timely feeds to your baby. If thumb-sucking is purely due to exhaustion, then all your baby needs is a crib and a peaceful nap.

 Thumb-sucking might also be a response to stress or the expression of attachment need. If your baby is sucking thumb because he is feeling worked up, all you need to do reassure him by pampering or giving him a hug. If thumb-sucking is due to stress, find the trigger and provide comfort.


 If your child has a strong sucking drive, instead of always pacifying him with the sucking, try the alternatives such as massaging, rocking or singing. Introduce these kinds of alternatives as early as possible. Your baby will gradually explore the possible alternatives for thumb-sucking and be contented with it.

3.Use distractions:

When the tiny thumbs are bored, they would certainly look out for their friend, mouth. When you sense your child is about to put the thumb in his mouth, distract him or Offer him different activities which could keep his both hands busy. Show him outside the window or give him blocks to play with or distract in some other way. These kinds of distractions can intrigue and even soothe your baby so that he becomes less dependent on thumb sucking.

4.Gentle reminders: 

As your child grows older, make a secret signal which could be made to stop your child from thumb-sucking. In that way, your child won’t be embarrassed if he is in public and you need to tell him to stop thumb-sucking. In case of toddlers, they understand the basic instructions such as “No”. Use this simple instruction to gently remind your child not to suck the thumb.


If you ever try to forcefully pull out the thumb your child is sucking, you will realize that is the worst thing you could ever do. So, instead, inspire your child to stop thumb-sucking on his own. Tell him all the things he has given as he grew old such as breastfeeding, bottle feeding and also tell him how proud you are about your child for growing up. And gradually advocate the idea of stopping thumb-sucking as well. You could also advocate this idea by asking about your child’s favourite characters such as “Does Doraemon still suck his thumb?”

6.Negotiate a milestone:

 If your child is competent and is eager to meet the target goals within stipulated time, try giving him a target date. Ask him to stop sucking the thumb within the said time. Nevertheless, your child might come back anytime and say he has changed his mind and don’t want to negotiate regarding the thumb-sucking. In that case, don’t lose your temper and just smile back.

7.Try Pacifier: 

Pacifier could help in breaking the habit of thumb-sucking. Although the pacifier also feels like a thumb, it is less addictive and less habit-forming and it is definitely worth a try. However, it is always best not to force pacifier to the baby. If he rejects it, then skip it.

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